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The clinical features of eight patients with myositis ossificans progressiva are described and the effects of treatment with the diphosphonate EHDP, together with surgical removal of ectopic bone, are assessed. Early correct diagnosis remains unusual, mainly because the significance of the short great toes is unrecognised, and because myositis may be mistaken for bruising, sarcoma or mumps. The diphosphonate disodium etidronate (EDHP) was given to all patients in an attempt to suppress calcification of new lesions; in five of them ectopic bone was removed during the treatment. EHDP sometimes delayed the mineralisation of newly formed bone matrix after surgical removal but this delay could not be predicted. The variable effect of EHDP may depend particularly on the amount absorbed and on the activity of new bone formation.


Journal article


J bone joint surg br

Publication Date





48 - 57


Adolescent, Adult, Calcinosis, Child, Etidronic Acid, Female, Humans, Male, Myositis Ossificans, Organophosphorus Compounds, Radiography